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Medical Privacy Rules

By: Lynsley Smith
By: Lynsley Smith

These are changes that affect your personal health information, and just who your doctor or pharmacist can share it with. Counting out pills at target's pharmacy, Dean Courson is also counting up some changes as new patient privacy rules take effect.

“Anything now with customer’s name any type of personal information now has to be shredded,” Courson says.

Changes might be as simple as speaking in a lower voice on the telephone, or filling out a few more forms.

“Because of the changes your pharmacist might not be able to answer your questions over the counter. He might ask you to take a step into a private consultation area,” explains Courson.

Debra Weller is in charge of Tallahassee Community Hospital's compliance with the new rules. One big change? On check-in, patients will get a privacy passcode.

“If their mother wants to call and check on them or if their sister or husband, if they call in on the telephone, they would be asked for passcode, and if they have passcode, get more information about the patient than just general status,” Weller comments.

Nurses will be more careful where they put patient charts.

And all TCH patients will get a copy of this privacy brochure.

Healthcare consultant Doug Nordby says more paperwork may be the biggest change we notice.

But now pharmacists like Courson have to think more about protecting your privacy, not just protecting your health.


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